Dear Tere, In July 2016, eyewitnesses from PETA and Anonymous for Animal Rights (Israel) traveled to South America to expose one of the cruelest industrial cattle slaughter methods in the world. It’s known as “shackle and hoist.”
Join us in urging Israeli authorities to ban imports from slaughterhouses that engage in this barbaric practice.
In July 2016, eyewitnesses from PETA and Anonymous for Animal Rights (Israel) traveled to South America to expose one of the cruelest industrial cattle slaughter methods in the world. It’s known as “shackle and hoist.”
“The shackling and hoisting shown in this video is a violation of all industry and international welfare guidelines.” —Dr. Temple Grandin, renowned animal-welfare expert.
What Rabbis Say
Shockingly, representatives of the office of the chief rabbi of Israel previously defended the kosher status of “shackle and hoist” beef, reportedly declaring that “gratuitous cruelty” does not “disqualify the meat” as kosher.
However, many other rabbis across the spectrum have spoken out against “shackle and hoist” slaughter, citing Jewish laws and principles, especially tsaar baalei chayim—not causing unnecessary harm to animals:
“It is hard to reconcile the humane slaughter that kashrut is meant to represent with this barbaric practice.” —Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz, president and dean at Valley Beit Midrash
“[T]he restraint methods used in South American kosher slaughter are the most crude and abusive in the commercial kosher slaughter industry.” —Rabbi Adam Frank, Masorti Congregation Moreshet Yisrael
“We have good evidence that shackling and hoisting animals while still conscious causes immense pain to the animals themselves. … Especially since a much less painful alternative is available for kosher slaughter, shackling and hoisting them unquestionably constitutes a violation of Jewish laws that forbid us to cause undue pain to animals.” —Rabbis Elliot N. Dorff and Joel Roth, the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards of the Rabbinical Assembly
Shekels, Lies, and Videotape
Following a series of previous PETA investigations into kosher slaughterhouses in Uruguay, the chief rabbi of Israel promised to phase out “shackle and hoist” slaughter and declare the meat to be “non-kosher”:
“Rabbinate to Phase Out ‘Shackle and Hoist’ Animal Slaughter” —Jerusalem Post
“Israel’s Chief Rabbi to Mark Imported Beef Unkosher if Slaughtering Process Not Changed” —Haaretz
But as this new video has exposed, these promises have not been kept. Sixty to 80 percent of the beef exported to Israel is still produced using “shackle and hoist” slaughter. So why does the Chief Rabbinate of Israel continue to certify such a primitive and cruel practice when there are other methods of kosher slaughter that use more modern equipment and cause less suffering? “Shackle and hoist” slaughter only persists because it’s faster and cheaper to disregard animal welfare.
This carefully calculated cruelty allows slaughterhouses to kill more than 90 cows per hour. “Shackle and hoist” slaughter is almost twice as fast as less agonizing methods. This is the hidden cost of cheap kosher meat. The cows are paying the price.